Darlington Borough Council has awarded a three-year contract worth more than £100,000 to Capita Software Services to deliver its supported housing systems, with the aim of improving services for homeless and vulnerable people by streamlining existing processes.
Capita is providing the Capita Support gateway system and Capita Support Housing Options Advice Management System (HOAMS) to manage Darlington’s ‘Key point of Access’ service for vulnerable people. The council successfully piloted a basic database in 2009 and upgraded to Capita Support in 2010 with funding from the government’s ‘Supporting People’ scheme. Capita Support and HOAMS are expected to be operational during the second quarter of 2010.
Previously if someone needed hostel accommodation, the hostel would assess the individual’s needs but if it couldn’t provide an appropriate service, the individual would be referred to another hostel and yet another assessment would be carried out. Now homeless individuals in Darlington are directed to the Key Point Access service which assesses individual needs and uses Capita Support to refer people to an appropriate hostel and any other services they might need.
Anthony Sandys, Supporting People and housing benefit manager, Darlington Borough Council, said, “Capita Support will enable vulnerable people in Darlington to receive the services most relevant to them straight-away.
“It will save us valuable time and money as housing staff now no longer need to contact hostels to find a vacancy and there is no need for duplicate assessments.”